The Pirbright Institute’s Dr Pip Beard has been awarded funding to study lumpy skin disease (LSD), a severe viral disease of cattle which is found throughout Africa and the Middle East. Little is known about the LSD virus, so the award will be used to answer fundamental questions about the mechanisms it uses to cause disease.
Scientists at The Pirbright Institute have identified a new type of immune cell in chickens that is involved in the development of Marek’s disease.
Marek’s disease virus (MDV) is highly contagious and causes a deadly cancer of the lymph nodes (lymphoma) and immunosuppression in poultry, making birds susceptible to secondary infections. MDV is a major threat to the poultry industry, with losses relating to the disease estimated to be up to $2 billion worldwide.
Scientists at The Pirbright Institute will receive a subaward of $2.66million as part of a research team led by Massachusetts Institute of Technology in DARPA's Safe Genes programme. This programme aims to gain a fundamental understanding of how gene editing technologies function, address potential health and security concerns relating to accidental or intentional misuse of the technology and work out how they can be used safely, responsibly and predictably for global benefit.